Rick's Journal

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Earth Skills, Intimacy and Becoming a Transformational Instructor

Hawk Circle Instructor Eli Martz spends time teaching Daniel about carving, and following the grain of the wood.   2003
The process of learning a new skill like tracking, or fire, or shelter, or wild edibles, takes time, patience, and a lot of attention to details. You have to develop an intimacy with wood, or stone, or plants or animals, etc. and build a relationship with those elements, and be willing to learn and grow.

It's a process, not an event. It's about building lots of little skills of dexterity, awarenesses, tiny habits and practices that lead to understanding and mastery. 

For many students, this journey to learn will fail unless you find someone to help you through that maze, and give you the gifts, the tools and the understandings that will lead to success.

Think of the old, authentic fairy tales.

I know it might be a weird analogy, but it's actually very much spot on!

You don't get to have the princess or prince, and the kingdom, or reward, until you slay the dragon or the ogre. You can't slay the monster unless you have the Blade of Steel and Perfection. You can't get that Blade until you have passed the test by the Hag of the Ruined Castle, which are high above the Cliffs of Doom. So, you have to conquer your fear of heights, and unknown riddles, and weird mystical people, and pass all these tests, to achieve your goals and your objectives. You have to have friends in high places. You have to have the ability to see the deep inner gifts that those friends have, and create a relationship with them where they will offer those gifts freely. Or sometimes you have to steal them, in some tales! But in any event, having a mentor or source that you can gain wisdom or insight is key to knowing your next step.

That's the kind of mentor you have to be if you want to add this layer of transformation to your work.   And your students shouldn't be a job or a means to an end (paycheck), but someone who will be a lifelong friend and someone you will be proud to know for your whole life.

So, to be this kind of mentor, you kind of have to go through this experience yourself, and figure out how to get around these challenges and mountains, valleys, everything.  You have to do it alone, and you have to do it with a mentor sometimes too.  If you're really lucky!

If this isn't what you are all about, or you are unsure, go work at Starbucks. Go mow lawns, or wait tables at the Olive Garden, or do whatever it is that makes you happy. Not saying it's bad to do those things, because they are important jobs too. But what I am saying is that if you are in the business of transformation, you have to be the real deal. There is no faking it...

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